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Did Trump dishonor American veterans?

West Virginians have always been extremely patriotic during wartime.

Just in the 20th century, West Virginia soldiers have made the ultimate sacrifice with more than 10,000 men and women losing their lives in military actions (WV Veterans Memorial Archive).

Their sacrifices insured the survival of our freedoms and the preservation of our Constitution. Yesterday, The Atlantic revealed that Mr. Trump labels those who died in our wars as“losers” and “suckers.”

In 2018, he canceled a visit to a cemetery near Paris where numerous American soldiers are buried. At the time, he blamed rain for the decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. The article reports that the real reason for cancellation was that Trump did not want the rain to mess up his hair.

He actually scorned visiting a cemetery with American heroes who died at Belleau Wood — one of the most celebrated Marine battles in our history: we sustained 1,800+ deaths and 4,000+ injured out of a Marine force of 9,000 — a pivotal World War I battle where Marines seized and captured a German stronghold on French soil.

Marines learn in boot-camp about the courage of their earlier comrades who sacrificed their lives and bodies to achieve a victory against all odds. No,Mr. Trump, the Marines at Belleau Wood were not “losers” or “suckers.” They embody everything patriotic and courageous.

The audacity of a commander-in-chief calling the war dead “losers” is a disgrace. The White House denies the story today, but remember, he also called John McCain a “loser” because he was captured and spent nearly six years in a North Vietnamese prison camp after being shot down as a Navy pilot and suffering two broken arms and a broken leg.

Trump’s sister, a retired judge, was secretly recorded last month admitting that Trump lies,can’t be trusted, and was so dishonest that he paid a friend to take his SAT tests so he could get into an Ivy League School.

What does the military say about Trump? General Colin Powell, a Secretary of tate, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Bush, called him an habitual liar who is drifting away from our Constitution.

Powell, a loyal Republican, is voting for Biden.

James Mattis, a Marine General, and Trump’s previous Secretary of Defense, said that Trump’s order to the military to dispel peaceful citizens in D.C. (during a photo-op with a Bible with military leaders standing alongside) clearly violated the Constitution. He also said that Trump is the first president during his lifetime who has tried to divide the country rather than to unite it.

Eighty-nine other generals and admirals (including General John Kelly, Trump’s former Chief of Staff) joined Mattis’ condemnation of Trump. Mocking dead and wounded soldiers is unforgivable.

I urge all West Virginia voters to give Mr. Trump his “dishonorable discharge” at the ballot box this fall.

John W. Cooper

Canaan Valley

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